Get Fit Without Ever Leaving Home


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You don’t need to head to the local gym to stay in shape, or spend a fortune at the fanciest fitness salon. In fact, for some people, working out at home may be the best option. Check with your doctor before starting any new physical activity routine. And if you opt to create your own fitness plan, here are some surefire tips for success:

You might be surprised to discover that you already have everything you need to build your own home gym.

Start Walking

Walking is one of the easiest ways to stay fit - and you can do it just about anywhere. All you need is a pair of comfortable shoes. Just make sure your pace is fast enough to benefit your health. How to tell? If you can talk, but not sing your favorite song, your pace is moderate. Start out like this, and work up to a faster rate as you get fitter. There are lots of ways to squeeze walking into your day:

  • Walk through your neighborhood with your kids, family or friends. It’s an activity that folks of all ages can share.
  • Run or walk briskly up and down the steps of your own house to get your heart pumping. As it becomes easier, build up to more repetitions.

Do Things the Old-fashioned Way

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  • Avoid modern conveniences. Try sidestepping some labor-saving gadgets. For example, use a push mower instead of an electric version. Skip the electric hedge trimmer in favor of manual clippers.

Create a Home Gym

You might be surprised to discover that you already have everything you need to build your own home gym:  

  • Make your own weights: Filling used soda bottles or other containers with water or sand is a handy and affordable alternative to expensive weights.
  • Craft your own resistance bands: Old nylons or tights are the perfect substitute.
  • Use chairs or stools: Chairs can make great props for certain activities, like leg lifts. And you can use a low, sturdy stool for step training.
  • Look for used equipment: Yard sales and thrift shops can be inexpensive sources of used fitness equipment.
  • Stock up on fitness DVDs and videos: Your local library is a good source of free materials, or look for used copies.
  • Take advantage of technology: If you’re tech savvy, use free or inexpensive smart phone apps or computer programs to plan and track your workouts.
Small Steps: Utilize “Wait” Time
Waiting for your kid’s soccer game to start? Take a brisk walk around the soccer field. Waiting for the coffee maker? Knock out some calisthenics.